Cheaper organic produce isn’t just a myth

These organic carrots cost $1.49 for 2 pounds at Kroger last week -- the same price as the regular carrots.

These organic carrots cost $1.49 for 2 pounds at Kroger last week — the same price as the regular carrots.

With Wal-Mart vowing to offer organic produce at the same price as the regular stuff, has the time come for us to drop Green Bean Delivery?

This is a question that’s been nagging at me the last couple of weeks. Our whole family has loved getting organic produce delivered to our door. Though I’m a notorious cheapskate, especially when it comes to groceries, I justified the $35 weekly cost of a laundry basket-sized bin as a family health initiative. At the store, I could never bring myself to pick up organic fruit that cost twice as much as the pesticide variety. This way, it was preprogrammed in and I didn’t have to wrestle with each individual decision.

Lately, though, I’ve been finding cheaper organic veggies at various grocery stores – and not even at Wal-Mart, where I rarely shop.

In recent weeks Meijer has included organic celery, kale and mushrooms in its 11-items-for-$10 sale. Last week I bought 2 pounds of organic carrots at Kroger for $1.49, which was the same price as regular carrots.

Yesterday at Aldi’s I found all kinds of organic produce priced just slightly higher than ordinary produce: A pint of grape tomatoes for $1.69. A 3-pound bag of organic apples for $3.99. Frozen organic strawberries were $2.69 for a 12-ounce bag and frozen organic blueberries were $2.99 for a 10-ounc bag.

I didn’t pull the trigger on everything I saw, which included way more than what I mentioned above. I don’t see the need to buy organic bananas and citrus fruits, for example, since you don’t eat the skin. And some veggies no one will eat but me, so I figure if I really want Brussels sprouts or cauliflower I might as well buy the cheapest varieties I can. (I did spring for 5 ounces of organic baby spinach for $2.49, which sounds like highway robbery but is actually a pretty big container. And our two vegetarian kids are big spinach fans, though Rowan is rarely home these days.)

For the time being, I’ve been suspending our Green Bean Delivery order every other week or so without actually cutting it off altogether. Will they drop their prices to compete with the Wal-Mart maneuver – if that even even comes to pass? Hard to say. Stay tuned.

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